Adolescent Mental Health


One of the populations that the pandemic has impacted the most is adolescents ages 10 to 19, as their experience in the last couple years has shifted dramatically in terms of school and social development. The pandemic has resulted in school behind screens, less opportunity to interact with friends, and perhaps a general sense of isolation. While teens may have been connected to wifi, that doesn’t mean that they felt connected mentally or emotionally. Many adolescents report missing out on opportunities they would have otherwise gained from being in person, feeling isolated, feeling depressed, and many also report experiencing anxiety pertaining to returning to in-person school. According to the CDC, “more than 1 in 3 high school students had experienced persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness in 2019, a 40 percent increase since 2009” (CDC, 2021). This percentage is expected to have increased in light of the challenges in the last couple years. Even aside from the challenges of the pandemic, many adolescents experience mental health issues. Common mental health concerns amongst adolescents include depression, anxiety, as well as behavioral and developmental concerns.

How to help.

Adolescence is a developmental period in our lives when social connection is crucial. This is why it is important to maintain strong connections with people who support us. Having a sense of community through sports teams, volunteer work, school, friends, family, and other enriching support systems can help adolescents feel more connected and encouraged.

For adolescents who experience more debilitating mental health symptoms, getting connected with a mental health professional is suggested. Psychiatrists can help adolescents manage mental health symptoms through administration and monitoring of appropriate medication; psychotherapists can help adolescents voice their concerns and feelings while also developing helpful coping skills. Adolescent group therapy is a helpful way to receive treatment for mental health struggles while also becoming part of a community with shared experiences.

Online Resources.

  • Mindfulness for Teens – provides mindfulness apps and guided recordings geared toward adolescents.  
  • Strength of Us – an online community that provides peer support and resource sharing with the aim of empowering youth impacted by mental health concerns.
  • Teen Line“provides support, resources, and hope to young people through a hotline of professionally trained teen counselors, and outreach programs that de-stigmatize and normalize mental health.”
    • Teen Line phone: 800.852.8336


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021). Adolescence and School Health: Mental health. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved December 16, 2021, from